A new study finds a stronger genetic link to cerebral palsy than previously thought prompting researchers to recommend genetic testing for those with the most common form of the condition.

More than 20 percent of kids with hemiplegic cerebral palsy have rare copy-number variations — or structural alterations to their DNA — affecting genes instrumental in brain development, according to findings published this month in the journal Genetics in Medicine.

In about 5 percent of such children, researchers said the copy-number variation was likely the cause of their cerebral palsy.

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